A mother accused of starving her 6-year-old son in an attic for two years appeared in a Johnson County court for her preliminary hearing.
Giovanni at age 4
Family of Rachel Perez
DE SOTO, Kansas - A pediatrician says a 6-year-old Johnson County boy who was
found covered in his own filth in his mother's attic last year
would have died within 24 hours if he hadn't been found.
Deputies found Giovanni starving and covered with excrement when
they found him Aug. 17 in the attic of Rachel Perez's home in the
200 block of Center Drive in De Soto.
Dr. Lisa Spector testified Tuesday at the preliminary hearing
for Perez. The 27-year-old is charged with attempted second-degree
murder, child abuse and child endangerment.
"He really had no muscle tissue or fat tissue left on his
body,” said Spector.
Giovanni's 5-year-old sister testified on video Tuesday that her
mother sometimes hit her brother and told her and her sister to
never tell that he was in the attic.
Giovanni’s grandparents had asked Johnson County
Sheriff’s deputies to visit the family home.
When they arrived, Perez told them Giovanni was not there. At
that time Perez was arrested on an outstanding traffic warrant.
When deputies went back to the house later that night, they
found Giovanni, who has Down syndrome, in the attic.
Tuesday, the judge found probable cause for the charges against
Perez. Perez was pregnant when she was arrested; she delivered her
fourth child on Jan. 24.
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